Patrick Sellers looks out the window of his new office at Creighton and sees a lot of things.
Cornstalks aren’t on the list.
Sellers, the newest member of basketball coach Greg McDermott’s staff, admits to being an East Coast guy through and through. He had never been to Creighton before McDermott recently brought him to Omaha for an interview.
So what did he expect to see when he arrived in town?
“Honestly, I thought there’d be cornfields,’’ said Sellers, laughing heartily. “When you think of the middle of the country, you think flat lands and cornfields and speed limits of 85 miles per hour.
“Then, you get here and you find out this is a metropolitan city. It’s exciting.’’
Sellers figures having his own preconceived notions of Omaha dashed will benefit him as he attempts to sell recruits, many of whom could share his Eastern roots, on the Bluejay program.
“When I talk to kids on the East Coast, I’m going to have a map and show guys this is where Creighton is,’’ Sellers said. “And I’ll have a picture of the city to show them this is what it looks like. And I’ll have a picture of the arena where they’ll play and tell them that it’s full every night.
“And I’ll tell them there are no covered wagons out here.’’
Thursday was Sellers’ first day on the job at Creighton. He spent the day trying to get his bearings and become acquainted with his new environment.
In a couple of months, Sellers will hit the road and attempt to expand Creighton’s recruiting footprint as the Bluejays prepare to begin play in the new Big East.
“I think we’ll migrate east a little with our recruiting,’’ McDermott said. “It makes sense to go in that direction. We’ll spend a little more time out there to try to open up some new doors.’’
Sellers might be just the guy Creighton needs to knock down some of those doors. He grew up in South Carolina and New York, played his college basketball at Central Connecticut State and spent most of his coaching career on the East Coast.
While at Connecticut, he recruited some of the players who helped the Huskies win the 2011 national championship. He also worked with several who went on to play in the NBA.
His familiarity with the seven schools that are leaving the old Big East to form the new league, along with Creighton, Xavier and Butler, also should be beneficial.
Knowing what it takes to compete — and win — against the likes of Georgetown, Villanova and Marquette, Sellers said there is no reason Creighton can’t be successful in its move.
“With the facilities and the fan base, I think this is the best school in the Big East,’’ Sellers said. “We’re probably going to have the best fan support in the league. We’re going to have the best facilities, especially when the new practice facility is finished.
“All the things that make a real good program are in place. Creighton always has had some really good shooters. We’ll need to find some guys that can lock in on defense. If you can hold teams down in field-goal percentage and you can rebound, you’re always going to have a chance.’’
Sellers spent the previous two seasons as an assistant at Hofstra. He found himself searching for a job after the school hired a new coach.
Although Sellers knew little about Omaha, he was well aware of Creighton’s basketball reputation, as well as the exploits of two-time All-American Doug McDermott. That, along with the Bluejays’ move to the Big East, made for an easy sell.
“I’m excited to be working with a great coaching staff, and it’s big time to get Doug back,’’ Sellers said. “Whenever you have a player like that, a special player, you get excited about that.
“I’m also excited about going back into the Big East, going back to the arenas I’ve coached in and playing against a lot of my friends. And I’m really looking forward to being a part of the atmosphere here at Creighton. It’s going to be exciting.’’
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